Importing Complexity Leadership Theory Into Bureaucratic Organizations in Non-Western Environments: A Perspective and Agenda for Future Research

Importing Complexity Leadership Theory Into Bureaucratic Organizations in Non-Western Environments: A Perspective and Agenda for Future Research

Francis Donkor (School of Management and Economics, University of Electronic Science and Technology in China, China) and Isaac Sekyere (School of Business and Technology, Walden University, USA)
Copyright: © 2020 |Pages: 18
DOI: 10.4018/IJAMTR.2020070101
OnDemand PDF Download:
No Current Special Offers


Criticisms of bureaucratic leadership in the public sector literature are increasing, and as such, a growing number of scholars in public administration are calling for a more complex and conceptually sound theoretical models of leadership that are collaborative and reduce the power of the leader and create hybrid governance models. With a multifaceted perspective, detailed conceptual underpinning and a growing body of empirical study support complexity leadership theory (CLT) as a potential to address many of the issues where an individual is seen to possess all the knowledge in the organizational goals. The intent for proposing the importation of CLT in PSOs is to offer a paradigm for thinking about leadership to explore issues that confound those from the traditional view to the shared and adaptive leadership process. In conclusion, the HR practitioners within the entity should be seen to be responsible for their actions. Therefore, adopting complexity leadership theory in today's PSOs will enhance the performance of employees.
Article Preview


In the political and administrative environment, leadership influences how individuals or organizations achieve their objectives. New Public Management (NPM) reforms may have worked to achieve particular milestone (Osborne, Radnor, Kinder & Vidal 2015) in most developed and Western economies but achieving success in most non-Western economies have been a daunting task for political elites and their specialized administrative, bureaucratic leaders over the past decades (Fritz 2016; Andrews 2013). The traditional leadership styles focus on the behaviors and traits of individual leaders who are introduced by the government as specialized bureaucracies to manage these Weberian departmental strategies intended to be separated from politics (Cohen 2016). In most public sector enterprises in non-Western economies, these theories of bureaucratic leadership approach and decision-making strategies persist even though technology and innovation supposed to have taken the most significant part of the way of management. The development of postmodern theories has adjusted the thought of leadership for both scholars and practitioners in public sector leadership to shift their attention to the contemporary approach of leading. Entities are seen as a complex subsystem that can be adopted for effective leadership (Donkor & Zhou 2019). In order to improve efficiency and effectiveness, NPM reform focused attention on the importation of private-sector management strategies, which are purely outcome-based (Cohen, 2016). This importation of management ideas and concepts meant for private sector enterprises are supposed to shape the public sector bureaucracies (Weiss 2017; Radnor & Osborne 2012), and the focus of the administrations should be able to compete effectively. The adoption has encountered setbacks (Kim & Hong, 2013). Many public management studies have offered an insight into the rationale behind the importation of management concepts in public sector organizations but have been overlooked (Nielsen, Waeraas & Dahl 2019).

Complete Article List

Search this Journal:
Open Access Articles: Forthcoming
Volume 3: 2 Issues (2021): Forthcoming, Available for Pre-Order
Volume 2: 2 Issues (2020)
Volume 1: 2 Issues (2019)
View Complete Journal Contents Listing